Living off the grid with her dogs at V6 Kennels just outside of Quesnel BC Jody was a hard musher to connect with. I was grateful when her daughter, Kim, was kind enough to contact me.
Jody is the only musher to have entered the Open Class this year. This class is any team of up to 6 dogs that follow the first 70 miles of the race broken into two runs.
Although Jody is a fairly new musher in the racing world she has run a few, having entered the 150 mile stage race in Fort St. James a few times and the Under Dog Race in 2016.
Jody says she ends up being last or close to it, but is happy to just finish and enjoys being out with her dogs on the runners.
This year she thought she would spread her wings a bit and entered the Challenge.
This all started for Jody 10 years ago, all because her daughter started running dogs (yes, blame it on the children), and she thought to herself, "that looks like fun, Kim can't have ALL the fun." The following spring she had her own team.
This year she has two dogs that really stand out, both of them leaders.
Brock is her boy that has been her main leader for years, and the other a big noisy white dog named Thunder who belongs to Kim.
Thunder the star of the team, has been Kims leader through countless races. At 11 he has trained every other dog on the team, including Brock, and just won't quit!
Thunder helped save the day on a 'fun' run that Jody and her daughter shared in. I think you need to replace the word fun with terrifying, and you will have a more truthful understanding of the trek encountered. The two teams ran up to the top of a local ski hill, running up the long winding beginner run. The plan was to come back down the same way, but the dogs had a different idea all together. Instead they turned onto the steep black diamond run trail.
They Flew down the trail for what felt like way too long before another easier trail crossed the path. It was thanks to Thunder who took heed to Kim hollering Gee that they were able to avoid further exhilaration. That was their fastest trip down that mountain ever!
Jody wont have to worry about ski hills on the Challenge this year and I hope she has a blast. Hopefully she will be back again next year!
Photo Credit: Canadian Challenge Web Site